Today, 94% of the air we breathe is indoor air. We go from our home with recirculated air conditioning into our cars with air conditioning only to drive to work and work in our air conditioned building. And when we go to the store, you better believe we try to get that closest spot to the door so when can get right inside again!
Within our buildings and homes, all sorts of things occur in this recirculated air. We paint, we add new flooring, we spray for bugs, we clean with chemicals and sometimes the building leaks. All these components and more are happening in your space and causing bacteria, mold spores, endotoxins, mycotoxins and VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds). These VOCs are in and of themselves toxic. And you're breathing this air 94% of the time ,because it's indoor air. Now, can it have an effect on you? You bet!
These particulates and vapors can cause inflammation, allergies, asthma, headaches, fatigue, cancer and the list goes on. Mycotoxins are also potent immunosuppressive agents that directly affect immune cells and also modify immune responses as a consequence of tissue damage elsewhere.
During a Mold and Indoor Air quality assessment , we do a visual inspection along with gathering data and samples from the home to investigate and/or send to a lab. When we send these samples (air samples, direct samples, etc.) to the lab, a doctoral Toxicologist studies the samples and sends us the results in full detail. We are able to see as specific as what species of mold spore is in the air as well as how many per cubic feet. Mold testing in Jacksonville has never been easier!
With all of this data, we create a report with clear, easy to read recommendations on how to alleviate the problem(s) to make your home or building a safer one.
During assessment, we use modern and extremely accurate equipment to pinpoint problems in your breathing space. All of this, while being nonintrusive to your home or building. This equipment includes Thermal Imaging, Moisture meters for moisture mapping, Professional Hygrometers, Air-O-Cell air pumps for air samples, borescopes for hard to see places like air duct systems or behind drywall and cabinets, and pens for detecting negative air pressure. With this equipment paired with our licensed assessors, you can be assured this process will leave you in a much safer building or home.
How common is mold in buildings?
Molds are very common in buildings and homes and will grow anywhere indoors where there is moisture or elevated humidity. The most common indoor molds are Cladosporium, Penicillium, Aspergillus, and Alternaria.
Can anyone be affected by mold?
Yes. Although there is a specific genotype humans can carry that make them more susceptible to the dangers and symptoms of mold and mycotoxin exposure(HLA-DR Gene), any person exposed to mold in high concentrations and/or prolonged periods of time can suffer from the health effects of mold. Genetic testing is available to answer the question of genetic susceptibility to health effects related to mold toxins.
Who are the people who are most at risk for health problems associated with exposure to mold?
People with allergies may be more sensitive to molds. People with immune suppression or underlying lung disease are more susceptible to fungal infections.
How do you keep mold out of buildings and homes?
As part of routine building maintenance, buildings should be inspected for evidence of water damage and visible mold. The conditions causing mold (such as water leaks, condensation, infiltration, or flooding) should be corrected to prevent mold from growing.
Are all molds dangerous?
While not all molds produce mycotoxins, all molds in higher elevations than normal within homes or buildings can cause adverse health effects. Also, if there are higher concentrations of a mold spore that may not produce mycotoxins, it is a good chance there are conditions in the area that allow mold to thrive, therefore leaving opportunity for all sorts of mold species to grow and breed.